What The Designer of the DeLorean Says About Tesla’s Cybertruck

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In a recent interview with NPR, Giorgetto Giugiaro, the renowned 85-year-old Italian car designer responsible for iconic vehicles like the Lotus Esprit, BMW M1, and the legendary DeLorean DMC-12, shared his insights on the public’s reaction to Tesla’s Cybertruck. Giugiaro, whose own creation, the DMC-12, faced criticism in its time, draws parallels between the challenges his design encountered and the current scrutiny surrounding the Cybertruck.

Giugiaro believes that stepping outside conventional norms in design often provokes strong reactions, a sentiment he experienced with the angular DeLorean back in 1981. The Cybertruck, with its distinctive and unconventional appearance, has faced similar skepticism, particularly regarding its angular design and stainless steel body, reminiscent of Giugiaro’s past challenges with the DeLorean.

Despite the criticisms, Giugiaro offers reassurance to Tesla, stating that deviation from the norm is a common occurrence in various industries. He expresses confidence in the Cybertruck’s success, emphasizing the market’s need for distinctive designs. Giugiaro notes that every attempt to break away from traditional styles is initially met with resistance, and he believes the Cybertruck will find its admirers.

The unveiling of the Cybertruck in 2019 echoed Tesla’s flair for dramatic presentations. Elon Musk, Tesla’s CEO, showcased the truck’s stainless steel alloy exterior, similar to the material used in SpaceX’s Starship rocket. The presentation included a strength test of the “Tesla armor glass,” which did not go as planned, leaving Musk to reflect on the challenges of creating a truly tough vehicle.

The development of the Cybertruck has been marked by significant issues, ranging from powertrain and braking to suspension and structural problems, resulting in delayed deliveries. The stainless steel exterior, a nod to Giugiaro’s own design history, is identified as a central factor contributing to the truck’s difficulties.

Giugiaro explains the design philosophy behind angular cars, referring to it as “origami.” This approach, which he pioneered in the 1970s with concept cars like the Maserati Boomerang, involved wedges and sharp lines inspired by Japanese origami. The influence of this design style is evident in subsequent angular car designs, including the Volkswagen Golf Mk1.

Interestingly, Giugiaro draws attention to the similarities between the criticisms faced by the DMC-12 and those now directed at the Cybertruck. Both vehicles have encountered backlash for their stainless steel bodies, with reports of misaligned panels and questionable interior choices. Despite these challenges, the DeLorean DMC-12 achieved global recognition, thanks in part to its role in the “Back to the Future” series and Giugiaro’s status as the “Most Influential Car Designer of the 20th Century.”

Giugiaro refrains from passing judgment on the Cybertruck’s aesthetics, acknowledging that beauty is subjective. He emphasizes the vehicle’s appeal to those seeking a standout design and expresses optimism about its future reception. As history has shown with the DMC-12, time will ultimately determine whether the Cybertruck earns a similar distinction in the automotive world.

Source: NPR


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